The early 1950’s proved Joe McCarthy as one of the most popular men in America having waged a war against the “enemies from within” (McCarthy 1), the Soviet Communists. McCarthy understood the negativity of communism as a political ideology long before he came to tackle the subject publicly. Several of his allegations and basis for suspecting many people in the government as communists is governed by the idea that the Soviet Union as a deceitful empire infiltrates agents of the government to pursue the idealism laid by Marxist views. Communist agents is deemed by McCarthy as one of the primary reasons why during that period, America still is not celebrating and experiencing freedom but refers to the condition of the society in “the cold war” (McCarthy 1).
In his speech delivered in Wheeling, West Virginia in February 9, 1950, he expressed his great desire to determine the infiltrating communist agents present in the Truman administration. He mentions how the government serves as a cover-up to place communist in the highest ranks of the administration of the United States. During his speech, he delivered compelling arguments which encouraged his audience to realize the real situation. In the sentence “today we can almost physically hear the mutterings and rumblings of an invigorated god of war” (McCarthy 1), in an instant he has captured the audience attention to listen and realize these unsuspecting factors of his arguments against the communist.
As part of the progression of his arguments, McCarthy’s speech developed background to his ideas by emphasizing the difference of the communist ideologies with what America is promoting as a democratic institution. He questions communism in relatively varying ideas with what is realized in the Western world; the morality of communism in terms of a free economy, the division it promotes, and the religion of immoralism practiced by most communist leaders (McCarthy 1). The speech, to create an impact, discerns all attributes of the Marxism view which makes it different from what is practiced in America.
McCarthy, took on the anti-communist mission which inevitably placed him in a war against powerful forces during Truman’s administration, the federal bureaucracy, the Congress, and the leftists (Schlafly 1) . McCarthy delivered a speech which ultimately speaks to his audience, addressing concerns to realize what the situation is and heeding to the signs of such observations he has made. He emphasized the brewing of a major war which has begun under the people’s knowledge. In this manner, the power of his speech is determined because of the radical and provocation of fear among his audience. He was able to question his audience with what can be a phenomenon that they have not yet known.
The theme of the speech progressed by determining that the greatest of all enemies is held within the administration that is leading the country, as McCarthy mentions “The reason why we find ourselves in a position of impotency is not because our only powerful potential enemy has sent men to invade our shores . . . but rather because of the traitorous actions of those who have been treated so well by this Nation.” (McCarthy 1)
The speech, having built the ideals of communism as an evil empire – made the audience listen, the evidences of such idealism brought by communist leaders – made the people realize the circumstances they have noticed it, the point taken of communist traitors internal in the political system of the government- ultimately struck the paranoia and fear among the people. McCarthy ensured that through the speech, the audience would be able to discern the facts which emphasize his arguments. All these, in preparation of what can be considered as the gist of his speech, the identification of 205 suspected members of the Communist Party in the American government (later on, the figure was cut down to 57 which later subjected McCarthy into criticism for his consistency and credibility).
In a later speech addressed to President Truman, McCarthy then proposed how the President should act to determine the existence of communist agents shaping the foreign policy of the government. He reiterated his possession of the list which supports his claim, and addresses the need for the President Truman to investigate the matter (U.S Senate 1).
McCarthy’s “Enemies from Within” speech delivered during Lincoln Day on 1950 made him the most investigated man in U.S history for contemplating on a radical observation about the infiltration of communism in a democratic government. He resorted to name-calling, and probably created a realm of bias so obviously stated against the communism ideology. In the end, more than evoking more paranoia in the minds of the people, he became consistently subjected to criticisms and continuous defence for his views.